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Question
Dear Maria,
Could you help me with the following (all from de Officiis)

1. credamusque, quia fiat, quod dictum est, appellatam fidem (I, 23)
(a)Is an infinitive “esse” understood after “appellatam”?
(b)Is “quod dictum est” the subject of “fiat”?

2. ad gratificandi facultatem (I, 25)
Can we say “ad gratificandum facultatem”? If so, is there any difference between them? Also how to translate this phrase?

3. Delectant etiam magnifici apparatus vitaeque cultus cum elegantia et copia, quibus rebus effectum est, ut infinita pecuniae cupiditas esset. (I, 25)
Could you give a literal translation of the clause “quibus rebus effectum est”?

4. Nec vero rei familiaris amplificatio nemini nocens vituperanda est, …  (I, 25)
Is “amplificatio” the subj. of the present participle “nocens”?

Thank you.
Robert

Answer
Dear Robert,


1.In “....credamusque, quia fiat, quod dictum est, appellatam fidem.” (Cicero, De Officiis, I, 23)  the infinitive “esse” is just  understood after “appellatam”, and the relative  “quod dictum est” works as the subject of “fiat” in the causal clause, since the Stoics believed that the noun “fides” in the meaning of “loyalty/”honesty” was so called “because (quia) what (quod) has been said (dictum est) is made/happens(fiat)”, for the verb “fieri”, which is the passive infinitive of “facere” and means “to be made, to happen”, has the same stem as  “fides” (See FIo and FIdes).


2.In “....pecuniae cupiditas spectat ad opes et ad gratificandi facultatem ...” (I, 25) you cannot  say “ad gratificandum facultatem” nor “ad gratificandam facultatem” where the gerundive “gratificandam” agrees with “facultatem“.
In fact, the gerund genitive “gratificandi” depends upon the noun “facultatem” as “pecuniae cupiditas spectat ad opes et ad gratificandi facultatem” literally means:
” the desire (cupiditas)  for money (pecuniae) aims (spectat) at (ad) power (opes) and the possibility (facultatem) of bestowing favours (gratificandi)”.

So, please note that:
(a) “gratificandi” is a gerund genitive depending upon “ facultatem”;
(b) “ad gratificandum facultatem” is wrong because the gerundive “gratificandum” should agree with “facultatem” in case, gender and number (see AG 503 ff.);
(c) such a gerundive should be “ad gratificandam facultatem” that however would mean :“for bestowing the possibility” (literally, "for the possibility that must be bestow"), but  this  has nothing to with "the possibility of bestowing favours/of favouring someone".



3.In “ Delectant etiam magnifici apparatus vitaeque cultus cum elegantia et copia, quibus rebus effectum est, ut infinita pecuniae cupiditas esset" (I, 25) the literal translation of the clause “quibus rebus effectum est ut infinita pecuniae cupiditas esset” is the following:
”for/because of which  (quibus) things (rebus) it has been  caused (effectum est) that (ut) there was (esset) an insatiable (infinita)  desire (cupiditas) for money(pecuniae)”, i.e.:
“this is the reason why  there  was an insatiable desire  for wealth ”.

In short, “quibus rebus”  refers to the antecedent “Delectant etiam magnifici apparatus vitaeque cultus cum elegantia et copia” as this phrase clarifies the following  relative sentence (quibus rebus effectum est) as well as the “ut” clause.



4. In “Nec vero rei familiaris amplificatio nemini nocens vituperanda est(I, 25) the noun “amplificatio” is the subj. of the  passive periphrastic “vituperanda est”, while the present participle “nocens”  agrees with “amplificatio”.
Therefore the phrase literally  means:
”Nor (nec vero) the increase (amplificatio) of property (rei familiaris) that causes damage (nocens) to nobody (nemini) must be blamed (vituperanda est)”, i.e.:
"Nor we must blame the increase of property that however causes no damage to anyone".


Best regards,

Maria

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